About Intentional Torts and Personal Injury Liability

There is a class of personal injury liability cases that are referred to as intentional tort cases. An intentional tort would apply in situations like battery or false incarceration. They’re unique because the defendant engaged in intentional conduct. If you’ve been the victim of an intentional tort, you should read the rest of this article because you’ll have to prove that the at-fault party deliberately tried to harm you, and that’s easier said than done.

When is a Tort Considered to be Intentional?

The defendant’s state of mind when the injury occurred is what separates tort cases from other personal liability cases. The defendant had to have the thought of intentionally harming you. Then he or she must act on that intention. A good example would be a hairdresser deliberately nicking your ear because she didn’t like something you said.

You would think that it would be easy to prove that the defendant is guilty, after all, he or she premeditated your injury. Unfortunately, it’s not that easy. The reason is that you have to prove that the defendant is guilty of three types of intent. These are:

  • Willfulness
  • Knowingly causing harm
  • Recklessness

The injury lawyer in Brentwood knows that the defense will argue that the defendant was unaware that his or her actions would harm the plaintiff at the time of the accident and when the injuries occurred. But you still have hope if you’re the plaintiff and the defense wins the argument. You can still get a settlement from the defendant based on negligence.

The Types of Intentional Torts

It turns out that battery and false incarceration are only two of the many types of actions that are considered to be intentional torts. These include, but are not limited to:

  • Assault
  • Slander
  • Defamation
  • Misrepresentation
  • Fraud

You can sue the defendant under intentional tort law if his or her actions damage your reputation and not your body or property. Those types of actions are considered to be slander and libel under intentional tort law. Assault, battery, and wrongful death are more than intentional torts. They are also considered to be serious crimes. You require a lot of evidence to prove that the defendant has committed a crime since crimes must be proven beyond a reasonable doubt.

How does the Burden of Proof Apply to the Defendant?

The defendant doesn’t have to prove his or her version of the story, and the reason why should be obvious. He or she just needs to have the judge, jury, and/or other parties be convinced that the likelihood of the plaintiff’s story being false is more than 50%.

The defendant usually tries to present facts that contradict the plaintiff’s version of the story. The objective is to try to convince the jury, judge, and/or anyone else that your version of the story and your evidence is not ironclad.There is an exception and that is affirmative defense. The defendant tries to prove affirmative defense. He or she does that by providing additional facts that can punch holes in your argument.

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